|The book||Movie correlation|
|Native Son – Richard A. Wright
The Second Renaissance – Part I
|In the novel, Native Son by Richard A. Wright, an African-American is put on trial for killing a white woman, and his lawyer is forced to argue in court for the humanity of his client. Eventually the case is lost and Bigger is sentenced to death.|
|I Have No Mouth And I Must Scream – Harlan Ellison||Neo’s mouth is made to seal shut by the Agents.
<<The plot of “IHNMAIMS” is that after a global computer system becomes sentient, it battles with humans for control, and wins, and then takes out its anger by imprisoning some humans in an artificial world of the computer’s own making.>>
|Alice in Wonderland – Lewis Carroll
|“Follow the white rabbit.” “I imagine that right now you’re feeling a bit like Alice, tumbling down the rabbit hole?” “You take the red pill and you stay in Wonderland and I show you how deep the rabbit-hole goes.” In the book, Alice falls into a hole which turns out to be really deep, she falls for a long time.
Repeated mirror imagery (‘through the looking glass’) including a mirror covering Neo as he ‘falls’ into another world. Giant rabbits (movie Night of the Lepus) on TV in Oracle’s living room.
Red pill/blue pill: In the book, ‘drink me’ potion makes her big, ‘eat me’ cake makes her small. Jefferson Airplane, Go Ask Alice, “One pill makes you bigger, one pill makes you small.” The Matrix, the red pill wakes you to a new reality, the blue pill makes you go back to your old life.
Coincidentally(?) 1999 is the Chinese Year of the Rabbit. “A generally pleasant year which will bring new hope to the lives of many”(!)
|Alice Through the Looking Glass – Lewis Carroll
A Detective Story
|user MistaFreeze in the forums:
anyone remember this? crazy detective mentions it…
Jabberwocky was the poem Alice tried to read in Alice in Wonderland right after she enters the Looking-Glass House…the poem basically made no sense when she first read it and seems like a foreign language to her….but she figures out that the text is just backwards and that she can read it by holding it up to a mirror.
long story short, the entire point of the Jabberwocky poem in AiW is the fact that even when Alice is able to read the poem it doesn’t make any sense. It really isn’t supposed to…it has no meaning and should be taken at that face value…but later on Alice asks Humpty Dumpty the meaning b/c of her insecurity…she still thinks she’s reading it wrong because she can’t make sense of it, but the point of the poem and what makes it so unique is that it isn’t MEANT to make any sense…of course Humpty Dumpty proclaims that he “can explain all the poems that ever were invented” and starts assigning all types of random meanings to phrases and subjects within the poem, to which Alice starts constructing and attaching false meanings to, which in essence robs it of its original intent of making absolutely no sense at all.
alright, bringing this back to The Matrix, specifically DS…I’m beginning to think that the reason the first and third detective committed suicide/went crazy is because they probably got into some sort of firefight while chasing Trinity…maybe they saw something unbelievable (like the agents moving at high speed, morphing into other people)…SOMETHING that made them go crazy and start this vicious cycle of trying to make sense of the world they’re in…
say they saw an agent move incredibly fast, jump from building to building, whatever. it wouldn’t make any sense, right? you’d be like “how the hell did they do that?” the simple answer would be “they just can…case closed”…but human nature doesn’t allow most people to end it there…it’s in our nature to keep asking questions, make sense of everything…we’re curious as hell…so the detectives do this and drive themselves insane.
perhaps this is one of if not the reasons why “nobody can be told what the matrix is. you have to see it for yourself.”
From RED QUEEN in Through the Looking Glass:
“You keep your head under the leaves, and snore away there, till you know no more what’s going on in the world, than if you were a bud!’ ‘Are there any more people in the garden besides me?’ Alice said, not choosing to notice the Rose’s last remark.”
“‘There’s one other flower in the garden that can move about like you,’ said the Rose. ‘I wonder how you do it—-‘ (‘You’re always wondering,’ said the Tigerlily),’but she’s more bushy than you are.’ ‘Is she like me?’ Alice asked eagerly, for the thought crossed her mind, ‘There’s another little girl in the garden, somewhere!'”
……analagous to “free minds” within each matrix…
“‘That’s right,’ said the Queen, patting her on the head, which Alice didn’t like at all: ‘though, when you say “garden” – I’ve seen gardens, compared with which this would be a wilderness.’
Alice didn’t dare to argue the point, but went on ‘and I thought I’d try and find my way to the top of that hill—
‘When you say “hill,”‘ the Queen interrupted, ‘I could show you hills in comparison with which you’d call that a valley.’
‘No, I shouldn’t,’ said Alice, surprised into contradicting her at last: ‘a hill can’t be a valley, you know. That would be nonsense—‘
The Red Queen shook her head. ‘You may call it “nonsense” if you like,’ she said, ‘but rye heard nonsense, compared with which that would be as sensible as a dictionary!'”
…this entire passage is comparable to the world within a world theme. those in a specific Matrix think their world is so large and expansive, and many of us would have Alice’s initial reaction if someone were to tell us that our planet is just a speck…a complex anthill…but from a different perspective it’s microscopic (ie, outside of the matrix)…
“Alice curtseyed again, as she was afraid from the Queen’s tone that she was a little offended: and they walked on in silence till they got to the top of the hill.
For some minutes Alice stood without speaking, looking out in all directions over the country – and a most curious country it was. There were a number of tiny little brooks running straight across it from side to side, and the ground between was divided up into squares by a number of little green hedges, that reached from brook to brook.
‘I declare it’s marked out just like a large chessboard!’ Alice said at last. ‘There ought to be some men moving about somewhere – and so there are!’ she added in a tone of delight, and her heart began to beat quick with excitement as she went on. ‘It’s a great huge game of chess that’s being played – all over the world – if this is the world at all, you know. Qh, what fun it is! How I wish I was one of them! I wouldn’t mind being a Pawn, if only I might join – though of course I should like to be a Queen, best.’
She glanced rather shyly at the real Queen as she said this, but her companion only smiled pleasantly, and said ‘That’s easily managed. You can be the White Queen’s Pawn, if you like, as Lily’s too young to play; and you’re in the Second Square to begin with: when you get to the Eighth Square you’ll be a Queen—‘ Just at this moment, somehow or other, they began to run.”
….after they race and race, Alice seems to be going nowhere…almost as if she’s running in place….
“The Queen propped her up against a tree, and said kindly, ‘You may rest a little, now.
Alice looked round her in great surprise. ‘Why, I do believe we’ve been under this tree the whole time! Everything’s just as it was!’
‘Of course it is,’ said the Queen. ‘What would you have it?’
‘Well, in our country, said Alice, still panting a little, ‘you’d generally get to somewhere else – if you ran very fast for a long time as we’ve been doing.’ ‘A slow sort of country!’ said the Queen. ‘Now, here, 1 see. it takes all the running you can do, to keep in ;he same place. If you want to get somewhere else, you must run at least twice as fast as that!’
‘I’d rather not try, please!’ said Alice. ‘I’m quite content to stay here – only I am so hot and thirsty!’ ‘I know what you’d like!’ the Queen said good naturedly, taking a little box out of her pocket. ‘Have a biscuit!'”
…similar to the matrix idea of “your mind makes it real”. she races and runs and is exhausted, but hasn’t moved at all. the rules are different in wonderland….
|Simulacra and Simulation – Jean Baudrillard – “On Nihilism”
|The book that Neo has discs hidden in. A postmodern philosophical book.
Morpheus: “Welcome to the desert of the real” – quoting Baudrillard.
From the screenplay draft:
|Neuromancer – William Gibson
|<<Gibson presented the idea of a global information network called the Matrix, and the term cyberspace, a virtual reality simulation with a direct neural feedback.>>
<<In “Neuromancer,” the place that Maelcum is from is called Zion. Maelcum is a big, “all natural” rastafarian that wouldn’t enter the matrix — much like Tank and Dozer. * “Neuromancer” was the first book (that I know of) to use “jack in” and associated terms to refer to using a computer network. * The Matrix in “Neuromancer” is the same as in the movie; it was totally real, and if you died in it, you died in real life (there was one character, “Dixie Flatline” who died, and his persona was recorded into a “construct” (eh, ever heard of that? 😉 and used by the main character of the book as a guide). * In “Neuromancer” you hooked up electrodes to your forehead to jack in; in The Matrix, you plugged it right into your brain. Users of the matrix in “Neuromancer” would strap themselves into their chair, so that they wouldn’t move around too much while they were jacked in — remember Neo jerking around during the fights with the Agents? * In “Neuromancer” the AI “Wintermute” was controlling the lives of a few of the characters via interacting with their electonic appliances, and they didn’t really know it; hmm… AI’s controlling humans? * In “Neuromancer”, Maelcum flys a “tug” space-vessel… It’s weaponless, and good for hauling people and gear around. Much like the Neb in the Matrix, I suppose.>>
|Metamorphoses – Ovid
|<<A mythological compendium in epic style by the Roman poet Publius Ovidius Naso.>>
<<There is another Morpheus, known from Ovid’s Metamorphoses, plays no part in Greek mythology. His name means “he who forms, or molds.”>>
|Republic – Plato – Allegory of the Cave
|Read about Allegory of the Cave/Matrix parallels here.|
|The Tibetan Book of the Dead
|<<On page lxix: On principle, it would seem that in the case of entry into an unborn body such entry may made into the MATRIX in the same way as if it had occurred after a break of consciousness in death. On page lxxxi: This last is followed by the consciousness taking up its abode in a suitable MATRIX, whence it is born again as a Birth-Consciousness.>>|